About Me

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I have spent a great deal of my life battling illness. I suffered from Crohn's Disease and eventually had abdominal surgery, thwarting the Crohn's and budding cancer cells. Since my surgery in 1995 I have been relatively free from Crohns', although I had several subsequent surgeries related to my ileostomy..When my disease was in remission, I don't think my husband realized how bad it could get, but he has stood by me. I also have suffered from various autoimmune disorders and am diagnosed with Stage IV Kidney Disease. Fortunately, I am maintaining and do not need dialysis at this point. We adopted our son and later found out he had cerebral palsy, so he became my career. Dan has had two surgeries and tons of therapy and is able to walk because of it. He is a college graduate and is employed as an Information Specialist. We are very proud of his accomplishements. I am now part of the retired generation and still getting used to the idea. I do enjoy crafting, traveling and being with family and friends. I am active in my church and feel that the hardships we endure are there to build our faith. I like to live life in the "now" as we never know how much time is left.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Sitting by God - NOT What you Think!

The big event this week, was my second trip to a pre-season game at Lambeau Field in Green Bay.
We went a few years ago, but that was with tickets from our brother-in-law.  This time, we used our new season tickets!  Jim had been on the waiting list for 27 years!  We are in section 740, way up by God!  (it is noted that we are interested in an upgrade).
We started our adventure by going to Kohl's Department Store.  It was raining there; so much for fixing my hair!  The customer service department was holding an NFL Green Bay Packer polo shirt for my husband.  We picked that up, then went to Walmart to pick up some meds, ate at Sub-way, picked up our son from work, went home, quick changed and left for the game. 
Jim has a co-worker who owns a field near Lambeau for parking.  It is only about two blocks from the stadium, but our gate is on the opposite end of the stadium, so it was a bit of walking.  I wore my #12 Rogers jersey, and told Jim to hold my hand or he would be going home with the wrong #12!
We started ascending the escalators.  After two, I was getting dizzy, so we took the elevator.  Level seven is as high as it gets.  I am afraid of heights!  It was a steep climb up the steps to our seats, lucky row number 13!  As I got in my seat.  I hung onto the arm for dear life, kept my eyes closed and as I imagined  being stuck like this for the next three hours, a few tears rolled down my cheek.  Jim kept saying that I would get used to it, and after some time, I did.  Phew!  One poor lady left, walking sideways down the steps with her eyes closed, hanging on tightly to the railing, while her friend led her down.  I guess I'm not the only one who is afraid of heights!
Up by God!
Sitting with my honey.
The thing with a pre-season game is that it doesn't count!  It consists mostly of third and fourth string players that are applying for a job with any team from the NFL, so I didn't know the players.  I also don't know much about football, so kept asking Jim questions.  It was difficult without having the TV or radio announcer giving you the play by plays.  (You mean I have to pay attention?).
Still, it was an experience.  My favorite part of the game, was when a college grad sang The Star Spangled Banner and the fireworks went off from the stadium!

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Things Happen in Threes

Wow!  It's the middle of August already!   I have been a busy girl.
We had a wedding late July with a Hawaiian theme.  It was a second marriage and quite sweet.

We then went to a bar reunion of sorts.  I used to hang out in this bar in my early 20's.  Well, everyone is older now, I don't drink, so it was kind of weird.  Not only that, but the bar had burned down, so the reunion was held somewhere else.


and Home of the Green Bay Packers,

Vince Lombardi

Curley Lambeau

The big G on the top of the Stadium

On the VIP Terrace

Clay Matthews doesn't scare me!

I really enjoyed the tour of the Stadium!  The best part was going through the tunnel the players go through on the way to the field.  They had sound effects of people cheering that got louder and louder as we got closer to the field and the door opened.  The Hall of Fame itself was interesting, but did not have any of the Superbowl trophies, but did have the rings.
The Packers are the only team who has the tradition on their first practice day of riding a kid's bicycle to the field, most of the time, either carrying the child, or the child running next to them.  They look pretty funny on those little bikes, but to the kids it's an honor!

First our bathtub drain broke.  So, I had to get a plumber to fix that so our son could take baths!  Did you know that one of those rubber circle things that are used to open jars works pretty well as a stopper?


One weekend the tall ships (schooners and the like) were sailing the great lakes and docked in Green Bay for the Tall Ship Festival.  Well, we had to check that out!

Took a tour of The Galeon from Spain

World's largest rubber duck?
In the middle of a heat wave, our air conditioner decided to bite the dust!  As they say, "it isn't  the heat, it's the humidity!"

 Fortunately we had two fans, and opened every window in the house!  Still, some days we just couldn't catch a break and the breeze was not with us.
We called our usual heating contractor and purchased an AC, furnace, and humidifier.  All were pretty old (30?) and just easier to replace them now than when it is the middle of winter and we have no heat!
The third thing that happened was my wash machine died!  I had piles and piles of laundry!  Jim went to the laundromat one day to wash his work clothes.  He said it was not a pleasant experience as the place was filthy!
In the midst of all this, I was trying to plan a rummage sale.  It was so hot and humid in the garage, I am always so tired, and all I could do was work on it a little at a time.  Finally, after about two weeks, I was ready to open.  That Friday, during the garage sale, my washer was delivered!  Yeah!  We worked around everything. So happy to have my new washer.  This time Jim bought the pedestal for it so I wouldn't have to bend over.  When the dryer goes (knock on wood), we will get a pedestal for that also.
I wish I could say my garage sale was a great success, but it was just okay.  I didn't have any really cool stuff to sell.  My son made more than I did with video games and the like. 
The first day, someone walked off with my ring case full of rings!  That was discouraging to say the least.  My bff and I had stamping and scrapping stuff for sale.  I probably could have priced my stuff a little higher.  It seems like the single stamps went better than sets!  Women's clothes doesn't go to well...waste of time and space!  I told my husband we are going to do this every year until we get rid of some of our junk, I mean treasures!
So, that's my story and I'm sticking to it!

Saturday, July 16, 2016

July is Festival Month!

July is zipping by!
I was still struggling with my abdominal pain, then my psoriasis spread to my ears and also my neck and face.  It itches and there are huge flakes!  Many people gave me advice and I found that using T-gel shampoo (for severe dandruff) to wash the areas, and my clobetesol (prescription) ointment on my neck and ears helped.  I just left my face alone, and put Aquaphor on the dry areas.  Ta da!  So happy these suggestions worked!
Went to 4th on the Shore.  Bands, food and beer!  You can see the Badger Car ferry on the shore of Lake Michigan!

Last weekend was Subfest in Manitowoc.  Manitowoc is the home of the Maritime Museum, hosting our very own submarine, the USS Cobia.  During WWII, 22 subs were built in Manitowoc. 

The city has combined things from the past; vendors, music, magic, fireworks, all the things that work for a great festival!
They have painted the Cobia black this year.

We enjoyed the lighted boat show on the river, and then the fireworks!


 Last Wednesday I had my final test at Froedtert Medical Center for my abdominal pain. Previously
 I had  an MRI which showed a healthy bowel with no active Crohn's.  Wednesday I had an ileoscopy which is like a colonoscopy but they go through the opening on my tummy.  No Golytely!  I just had to go on clear liquids on Tuesday!  (Insert smile).  I had sedation, which made me very sleepy all day long and a little nauseous, but my husband rewarded me with lunch at the Waterstreet Brewery!  Yum!
The results of my ileoscopy again, showed a healthy bowel.  So, what is causing the pain?  Apparently I internalize all of my stress (SURPRIZE!)  This causes electrical impulses to travel to the nerves, and hence, I get Crohn's, psoriasis, intestinal pain, and interstitial cystitis!  Lucky me, but it could be worse, so I will deal with reducing my stress through prayer, meditation, exercise and yoga.  Wish me luck!

Thursday, June 30, 2016

I'm Still Here, but with a New Look!

Hi,  I'm trying this again.
Summer has been uneventful, unless you count doctor and dentist appointments as events!  Because of all of this, I have decided not to volunteer at St Vincent DePaul.  I never know how I'm going to feel!
I have still been experiencing severe abdominal pain.  I decided to go to Froedtert Medical in Milwaukee for a consult as I have been there before for my abdominal surgeries.  The first order of business was an MRI was scheduled.  I got the contrast down, and got through the procedure, but I hope I never have to go through it again.  I think the noise of the machine would be a very good torture device!  Being enclosed did not bother me, as it was like a tanning booth.
The good news is that the MRI did not detect any active Crohn's or anything else.
Next step will be an ileoscopy.  That is like a colonoscopy but they will go through the opening on my tummy.
My psoriasis on my tummy is under control, but is flaring in and around my ears!   Sheese!
All this stress is adding to my urological problems, so my meds were increased to prevent any further flare ups.
Some days I feel like a mess, but it could be worse.  I still have not ridden my bike.  Will today be the day?  It is difficult when I have abdominal pain.
Recently I got my hair cut.  I decided on a new "do."


Last week I took my bff, and my great nephews to Bay Beach Amusement Park.  We met up with my niece and her husband and daughter.  It was a beautiful day, not too hot, and the boys were well behaved!  No crying!

My great niece talked me into some rides.  Here I am on the Sea Dragon (if you look real close).

In the middle. (the front on this pic).  As it swings, you are at a 90° angle looking down and looking up.  I didn't like it.  I closed my eyes.  My great niece kept saying, "It will be okay Auntie Debbie, you'll be fine, open your eyes!"  LOL.  She was such the little mother!
Next ride:  The Bumper Cars.  We had three who did not meet the height retirements, so I was recruited.  It wasn't too bad, unless we got hit really hard.  Hurt at the time, but I was okay after I got off.
That's us front left.

Friday, June 10, 2016

A Little Update

I have been experiencing horrible abdominal pain for over a month.  It has become more and more frequent, and more severe.  I went to the doctor at Froedtert Medical Center in Milwaukee on Monday.  He has scheduled a MRI and some type of scope for me for the 24th....the soonest I can get in.
I had three good days after he examined me and I thank God for that!  So far I feel okay this morning, but it is only 5:25am.  I took half of a pain pill last night and slept like a baby!
I bought a new used bike but haven't been able to ride it yet because either of the pain or weather.
It doesn't have hand brakes or speeds, but it has baskets and fatter tires.  It is just they kind of bike I can ride to Bible study at church!
Pleas say some prayers for me, and have a blessed week!
Deb...who got a new "do."  It's not that blonde, but it must be the lighting!